Blockchain PR firm Wachsman cuts 16 staffers amid crypto volatility

The firm attributed the layoffs to cryptocurrency market volatility.

Photo credit: Getty images
Photo credit: Getty images

NEW YORK: Blockchain PR and events firm Wachsman has let 16 staffers go in its New York and Dublin offices.

The firm employed more than 110 people globally before the staff reductions, the agency confirmed last week.

Eight junior PR and events employees and four employees handling operational duties in New York were let go in the restructuring, according to the firm’s statement. In Dublin, two junior events staffers and two operations employees lost their jobs.

David Wachsman, founder and CEO of the eponymous firm, said no one at its Singapore office, which employs 15 people, was let go.

Wachsman said the affected employees received severance pay and help finding new positions, including mock interview training, references, and assistance with résumés and job searches. He did not disclose if any of the affected employees had signed non-compete clauses.

Wachsman, which was founded in 2015, provides strategy, PR, events, and corporate development services to blockchain and emerging tech companies. The firm has worked with clients including Lisk, Brave New Coin, Horizen, RNDR, Dash, Coindesk, ULedger, Orb, Steemit, and Coinsource, among others, according to its website. 

In January, New York magazine’s Intelligencer website profiled Wachsman as a vendor who saw his business explode along with the Bitcoin gold rush. The company opened a Dublin office last spring.

However, the exuberance over cryptocurrencies, and the related blockchain technology, has dropped dramatically in recent months, along with their value. Most of the top 100 cryptocurrencies by market capitalization are down in value from their peaks, according to the cryptocurrency statistics site Coinmarketcap.

Wachsman said the instability of blockchain-related currencies has had an effect on businesses servicing the industry.

"The blockchain industry has been historically volatile, and business operations have been affected by the rise and drop in value of bitcoin," he said. "Bitcoin, which acts as a measure for the industry at large, rose from $200 to over $500 in 2015 when Wachsman was founded, famously grew to almost $20,000 by the end of 2017, and is currently hovering between $3,000 and $6,000 on a daily basis. As a result, many businesses in the space are experiencing knock-on effects."

Wachsman did not say how his firm’s revenues were affected by the volatility or which clients curtailed work as a result. Despite the downturn, he said his company "remains committed to serving the blockchain industry and companies embracing emerging technology."

This story was updated to correct the date Wachsman opened a Dublin office and to correct its client list. 

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